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Fort Walton Beach Criminal Lawyers

Whether you are arrested for a first time DUI or a serious felony, the potential punishments can be a daunting prospect. Fortunately, individuals accused of a misdemeanor or felony have rights under the U.S. Constitution, federal statutes, and state law that provide effective tools when facing the oppressive influence of the government. Law enforcement officers rely on the fact that individuals will be too confused and overwhelmed when they are arrested to assert their legal rights.Our Fort Walton Beach criminal lawyers are committed to defending the rights of individuals and protecting the future of those who are falsely accused or who make regrettable mistakes. Whether you have been contacted by an individual or agency connected with law enforcement or taken into custody, you should immediately and definitively assert your right to remain silent until you have an attorney by your side to protect your interests and rights.

Criminal Defense Lawyers in Fort Walton Beach

Because our law firm has represented people charged with a broad spectrum of serious traffic violations, misdemeanors, and felonies, we have the background, expertise, and resources to handle virtually all federal and state court crimes. Some examples of the types of offenses we handle include:

Sex Crime Lawyers in Fort Walton Beach

Although no one wants to have their fortunes dictated by the criminal justice system, an accusation that you have committed a sex crime has the potential to derail every aspect of your life. A Fort Walton Beach sex crime conviction can lead to sentencing penalties like incarceration, fines, mandatory counseling, rehabilitation, probation, and mandatory registration as a sex offender or sex predator. The harsh impact of the registration requirement can hardly be overstated. A conviction that triggers mandatory registration can harm your reputation and permanently limit residential opportunities, employment options, travel choices, and your permissible interactions with other people. The level of scrutiny, bias, and discrimination that accompanies a sex offense increases exponentially when the crime involves a child.Although these penalties can cause immense harm, valid defenses that our experienced sex crimes lawyers in Fort Walton Beach might assert to protect your future include:
  • Sexual Exploitation: Lack of knowledge of the exploitation
  • Rape: Mistaken identity, consent
  • Child Molestation: Unreliability of the child’s testimony, witness/jury bias given the nature of the offense
  • Sexual Abuse: Improper identification, consensual encounter
  • Child Pornography: Lack of knowledge the purported victim was a minor, inadvertent download
  • Sexual Assault: Consent
  • Date Rape: Ulterior motives to harm the accused, consensual act, “buyer’s remorse”
  • Indecent Exposure: No exposure of sex organs, not a public place, act not vulgar or indecent, no intention to be lewd
  • Internet Solicitation: Lack of knowledge of the other party’s age, belief the messages were consensual
Defense like these that are specific to the charged offense often will be buttressed by defenses based on violations of your rights that include an unlawful search and seizure or confessions or incriminating statements obtained through unlawful coercion or violation of your Miranda rights.

Fort Walton DUI Lawyers

Under Florida DUI laws, driving under the influence (DUI) can be based either on being in physical control of a vehicle or driving while either (1) you have a blood alcohol level (BAL) of .08 or above or (2) your “normal faculties” are impaired (e.g. mental or physical driving ability). See Florida Statutes, Section 316.193. The penalties depend on prior DUI history and other aggravating factors, but the sentence can include some or all of the following:
  • Jail or prison time
  • Expensive fines and costs
  • Loss of driving privileges
  • Required installation of an ignition interlock device (IID)
  • DUI school
  • Community service
  • Probation
  • Misdemeanor or felony record
The mere fact you have been pulled over by a police officer after an evening of drinking alcohol does not necessarily mean you will be convicted of DUI because many effective defenses exist. Our Fort Walton Beach DUI lawyers specifically design our tactics to fit the specific facts, but some defenses that can be effective include:
  • Insufficient evidence to justify pulling you over
  • Officer inaccuracy or rote inclusion in the police report of physical signs of intoxication during the stop
  • Failure of the officer to provide proper instructions and demonstration of standardized field sobriety tests (SFSTs)
  • Reasons other than intoxication for poor performance in SFSTs like obesity, sickness, injury, limited mobility, darkness, and other applicable factors
  • Issues contributing to a false positive for a BAL above .08 like diets that are low in carbohydrates, use of mouthwash, improper observation of the mandatory waiting period, and other causes
  • Expiration of chemical mixed with blood sample or noncompliance with proper storage procedures for the blood sample
Although a DUI charge must be taken seriously because a conviction can have significant consequences, there are many effective defense strategies that can be used to obtain a dismissal, acquittal or substantial reduction in the charges.

Domestic Violence Lawyers in Fort Walton Beach

The significant rise in public awareness regarding family violence in recent years is a laudable development, but there has been a dark side to this renewed focus. The number of individuals coming forward with false or exaggerated claims has also increased. The media exposure on this issue has put pressure on police and prosecutors to promptly investigate and aggressively prosecute these cases. This external pressure can lead to a rush to judgment even when the report of the complaining witness, which is contested by the accused, constitutes the only evidence.Florida law defines domestic violence as crimes that result in injury or death of certain parties where specified relationships exist or existed in the past, such as:
  • Marital or blood relatives
  • Spouses/Ex-Spouses
  • Co-parents
  • Parties who live or have lived together as a family
Florida Statutes, Section 741.28 provides a non-exclusive list of offenses that would qualify under the statute like stalking/aggravated stalking, assault/aggravated assault/sexual assault, battery/aggravated battery/sexual battery, false imprisonment, and kidnapping.The powerful protection offered to alleged victims of domestic violence or those alleging the imminent threat of such an act under Florida Statutes, Section 741.30 highlights the ability of unscrupulous individuals to exploit a domestic violence injunction for improper purposes. The statute authorizes a judge when imposing an injunction based on domestic violence to include the following restrictive provision:
  • Exclusive use of the joint residence to the purported victim
  • Temporary orders that limit or prohibit minor child time-sharing by the enjoined party
  • Imposing a requirement of third-party supervision during your time with your child
  • Restriction of your Second Amendment rights, including but not limited to prohibiting gun ownership of the party named in the injunction
These harsh consequences can be used by someone with improper motives to bludgeon the other party into compliance with unreasonable demands, to inflict punishment, or to gain an advantage in family law matters. Our Florida domestic violence lawyers in Fort Walton Beach understand this potential for abuse, so we carefully investigate any physical evidence, relevant communications, police reports, medical records, or other relevant information and materials. We look for inconsistent statements, falsifications, improper motives, gaps in evidence, and exaggerated reports.

Reliable Fort Walton Beach Defense Lawyers

Whether you have decided to retain a private Fort Walton Beach defense lawyer or want to learn about your legal rights and potential defenses, the attorneys of our law firm are here to help.


Musca Law is a highly-rated firm with a team of seasoned Fort Walton criminal defense attorneys who have a wealth of knowledge, experience, and a thorough understanding of the law. This can make all the difference in defending yourself from criminal charges.

Fort Walton Beach Area

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(850) 570-0055

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217 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE Unit 116,
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548